Some friends of mine enjoy going to the CT casinos and play Caribbean Stud Poker. Based on a classic form of poker, Five-Card Stud, Caribbean Stud borrows the most basic concepts from the original and converts it into a fast-paced game of chance where you play against the house, rather than the other players. Firstly, to play Caribbean Stud you should know the official poker hand rankings. Once you understand that, the game is very straight forward:
Step One – Ante – Like any form of Stud poker, you begin the game by placing an Ante. The size of your ante is up to you, but must be within the table’s designated minimum and maximum bet amounts.
Step Two – Look at Your Cards – After all players have ante’d the dealer deals each players five cards. The players cards are all dealt face down, while the dealer turns one of his five cards face up. Players are not allowed to talk about, or show their hand to any other players on or off the table.
Step Three – Bet or Fold – After looking at your hand, you are required to either bet or fold. If you fold, you forfeit your ante and wait for the next hand. If you bet, your bet must be exactly equal to twice the amount of your ante.
Step Four – Dealer – Once all players have chosen to fold or bet, the dealer turns up his remaining four cards. If the dealer does not have a hand equal to or better than Ace-King high (meaning they have both an ace and a king in their hand), all players are paid 1:1 on their ante, and are returned their bet. If the dealer’s hand is equal to Ace-King high or better, then the dealers hand is said to “qualify”. At this point the dealer will compare your hand to their own. If your hand is worse than the dealer’s qualifying hand, you lose your ante and bet. If you hand is better than the dealer’s qualifying hand, you receive even money (1:1) on your ante, and payment on your bet in accordance to the pay scale.
Although not required, players are allowed to participate in the progressive jackpot if they so choose. To participate players must pay an additional $1 during the ante stage of play. If paid the players are eligible to win a piece of, or all, of the progressive jackpot.
To win a piece of the jackpot a player must have a premium hand (flush or better), and it must beat the dealer’s qualifying hand. If all those conditions are met, the player will receive a percentage of the progressive jackpot.
Basic Strategy – Not too difficult
If the dealer’s one show card is either an Ace or a King, you should only bet if you can beat an Ace King. In general you should bet anytime you have ace-king or better. It’s a guessing game whether or not the dealer will qualify, thus it’s often not worth risking three times the amount of your ante to potentially make back only 1:4 on your money.
When I played, it did seem to be a team game – everyone trying to beat the house without the worry of making mistakes that supposedly “hurt” the other players.
So, try it with some friends. Bring this playing strategy on a card – most casinos don’t mind because they know that game gives them an advantage of over 5% with perfect strategy.
That’s all for now.